Yesterday, I was checking out the Classmates.com website and noticed that they’ve added my elementary school on there. I was perusing the names and a couple of them really brought back some memories, none more than Gail Leach, a girl 3 years older than me that I was in love with in 5th grade (Guess I’ve always liked older women). So that got me thinking about the first crush I’ve ever had…
Her name was Bethellen Hawkes and we were in second grade at Griffin Memorial School. My mother used to babysit a kid named Craig Aussant and one day we were on the playground and he said “Look at Beth, she’s so pretty”. I looked and suddenly the wind starting blowing ever so gently through her hair, and somewhere in the heavens a chorus of angels started singing. From that moment on and for about the next two or three years, Bethellen Hawkes was the object of my tender childhood affection. I was infatuated with her. I used to worship her from afar. I would sit in class and steal glances at her when she wasn’t looking. I never missed an opportunity to show off in front of her. I used to ride my bike by her house and try to act nonchalant. About the only thing I didn’t do was talk to her. In fact, I don’t think she ever even knew that I had a crush on her. When you’re that young and you have a crush on someone, usually all you do is tease them. I never did that though, I was way too scared.
Once, in 3rd grade, Beth caught me picking my nose in class and went “Oh, gross!” and walked away in disgust. I was absolutely devastated. There was no way she would ever talk to me after that I thought. But I didn’t give up.
Another time, during Valentine’s Day in 4th grade, Mrs. Clapp made everyone in the class give a little paper valentine to each classmate (Remember those?). So I did mine and when I was done, I had 3 leftover. So I promptly put them in the little envelopes, gave two to Bethellen and one to her best friend, Michelle Wharton. Even back then I was smart enough to try to get in good with the best friend. My gesture was never acknowledged however and I was heartbroken.
Eventually I forgot all about Bethellen and moved on. Last I knew, I think she had a baby in high school and ended up marrying the father. I have no idea where she is today, but in my mind, she’ll always be the cute, sweet little girl that I had my first crush on so many years ago.
Ah, the things you remember…